THE BEST 10 PUBLIC SPEAKING SKILLS IN 2024

Find below the best 10 public speaking skills in 2024. Students & professionals can learn how to speak in public with this list of the top 10 public speaking skills, top tips, tricks and ideas in 2024.

Brought to you by Mau, a Senior Digital marketing specialist, keynote speaker and training facilitator at eDigital.

THE BEST 10 PUBLIC SPEAKING SKILLS IN 2024

What profession do you think has some of the best public speaking skills?

A stand-up comedian?

A magician?

A politician?

The director of the Department of Tax in your country?

Regardless of the profession, millions of people are wondering what the best public speaking skills are.

Below I will show you some of the best public speaking skills and tips you can put into practice in your next keynote presentation.

I will share below the best public speaking skills and tips for you from my experience and the learnings I have accumulated during many years of running hundreds of public speaking presentations, strategy workshops and training sessions.

Before we get started, I would like to say that there is no single valid and optimal technique for public speaking.

Your public speaking will improve with time as your style evolves and audiences change.

I am learning every time I have the pleasure to speak in public; however, I tried to remind myself of a few simple practical tips rather than buying “public speaking training” books or “public speaking training” courses and trying to remember them all.

Why?

Because public speaking courses and books can be overwhelming and will make you too self-aware to the point that it would not help you build your own public speaking style.

WHY ARE PUBLIC SPEAKING SKILLS SO IMPORTANT?

  • Evolve your industry. You public speak because you want to be a contributor on key topics that are challenging your industry. You want to share your point of view and be heard by other industry colleagues.
  • Teach. Sharing knowledge, making sure people understand it but also ensuring everyone has the tools or guidelines to put in practice is one of the most popular reasons why we love public speaking.
  • Make you happy. It feels “good” seeing people are actioning the insights you have passed.
  • Learn. One of the most amazing things you will like about public speaking is when you have the time and opportunity to listen to your audience and learn from them new perspectives about the issues being discussed.
  • Get buy-in. You as a student or professional “public speak” for a reason. You may be public speaking because you need an extra budget, sell an idea, you may need the audience to follow your strategic direction or you may want to find the resources needed for your next project.

PUBLIC SPEAKING – AN HONOUR AND A RESPONSIBILITY

Public speaking is not only a privilege for a marketing practitioner but also a massive responsibility! Your promise to your audience is that the info and insights you will be sharing are relevant, useful and clear and that you are there to show them – sometimes convince them – about the value of your ideas.

THE BEST 10 PUBLIC SPEAKING SKILLS

Below I am sharing the key factors I personally like to remember when having my public speaking engagements. I have taken some of these tips from blog articles, checked out some great TED talks and of course, remembered what I liked from other speakers I have the pleasure to learn from.

10. THE AUDIENCE EXPECTATION STARTS WITH YOUR PRESENTATION TITLE

Even before you enter the board room or the conference room for your keynote, it is very likely the audience has already set certain expectations about your public speech because of your presentation title and your presentation description they already read a few days or a few hours before your presentation.

Imagine people can go to see 10 speakers like you talking about the same topic but choose only one. What does your presentation title need to say so you can actually attract the right audience to listen to your keynote?

9. RELAX AND SHOW ENERGY!

  • Some professionals who are new to public speaking have the belief that their audience is there to measure how good you are as a public speaker or how correct your knowledge is. The reality is that most of the time your audience is there to learn from you, by default humans trust that you are there to help them and to transfer your experience and knowledge.
  • It is your belief and your certainty about your presentation idea that engages your audience. Your public speaking has to show that energy!

8. OVERCOME THE FEAR OF PUBLIC SPEAKING

Some people may feel anxious about their next public speaking presentation. It is fine what you feel 🙂 Public speaking tops the list of phobias for most people. Not spiders or heights – public speaking – yes, talk in public!

To kill that anxiety and fear in your next marketing presentation, my top tips are:

  • Be certain about the environment. The environment setting will also impact your audience’s attention, focus and eagerness to listen to you. You need to make sure the environment is comfortable and conducive for your talk.
  • Be certain about your key messages. It is a must to rehearse and memorise your key message. It does not look good if you forget the most important things you want to say.
  • Be certain about potential questions. Make a list of the top 20 questions your audience might be asking and have the answers in your mind ready. This exercise will also help you when you are ready to say things like “You might be thinking how can we blablabla“. You are here anticipating what people are thinking about.
  • Be certain what to do when an attendee corrects something you said. You might say something that it is out-of-date or incorrect and someone might say that to you. What to do? You thank the contribution and you could say you will double-check your sources.
  • Be certain to respond when you do not know how to answer a question from the public. In these situations, you could say: “I am not sure about that, I will have to check and get back to you” and hand the person my business card. The other thing is you could pass the question to your audience. This way you show you have been consultative and allow space for other experts to participate.
  • Be prepared for conflicting opinions. That can happen and it is fine if it happens. What you could say is: “Thank you; that’s very interesting because my belief is that blablabla and that’s because… (give two or three key reasons). However, let’s talk after the presentation as I’d like to learn more about your perspective on this” This way you respect the other opinion (even if you believe it is wrong), move on to your presentation and open a friendly discussion with the person after your presentation.

7. YOUR PRESENTATION STRUCTURE AIDS YOUR PUBLIC SPEAKING

  • Break down your presentation into 3-4 chunks and define a transferable idea for each chunk. A transferable idea for a chuck is the answer when you ask: What do I want my attendees to remember/action or share after the presentation about this chunk?
  • Memorising the topic and key message of each chunk will you be seen as a professionally prepared public speaker as attendees will notice that you have it so clear what you are going to deliver to them.

6. THE START OF YOUR KEYNOTE

  • Show that you care about your audience’s comfort and time this helps release the pressure at the start of your presentation. You can say “Just before we get started, I would like to…” You can indicate things like:
    • where the bathrooms are located
    • where they can get water if they want to
    • what time the presentation will be finished in case they need to confirm pick up time with someone.
  • Tell them where they can find the presentation slides. Make it super easy! Share a Slideshare link to your preso.
  • Allow for introductions. Everyone to say their names and what they do; people not only go to conferences to listen to you but also to network so you can help with that. When I have an audience that it is more than 20 pax, what I do is to ask people to show their hand if they are from a specific occupation: “Show hands who are marketers!“. This way, at least everyone can have a feeling of who is in the room. If you present to a group that they know each other, you do not have to do this.

5. DURING YOUR PRESENTATION

  • Speak slower than normal. Yes, speak slower no matter what. Why? Cause you want to make sure people understand you. Just take your time, and pronounce it clearly and securely.
  • Repeat important messages. It is not only great but useful for repeating important messages two or three times. This will help your audience confirm what you believe is important.
  • Repeating the titles of your presentation slides.
  • Explain how to do something. When explaining how to do something, break it into 3-4 steps maximum and explain each step with an example of a case study as much as time allows.
  • Share sources. It is fine to share who has helped you to get to your final ideas and insights. The reality is that most ideas are created every day and influenced by the things we read (other experts), the things we experience (given to us by other practitioners), etc.
  • Give a very clear indication of the start and end of each section (chunk) of your presentation. This will bring more clarity and energy to your presentation. When starting a new chunk you could say: “Let’s dive now into the next…” OR “Let’s have a look now to…“. When finishing a chunk, you could say: “The final key point of this section is…” OR “Let’s wrap up this section by saying that the most important thing to remember is…
  • Kill the closeness problem by imagining yourself you are an attendee who has no idea about the topic you are talking about. Do you know what the closeness problem is? The more you know about something the harder it is to see it from the perspective of your audience. That’s when information becomes vague and full of jargon. The solution: consider the audience’s perspective.

4. ENGAGING YOUR AUDIENCE DURING YOUR PRESENTATION

Some best practices to engage your audience are:

  • Make it easy for your audience to understand complex meanings. You can use metaphors: “Public speaking is like when you…” or phrases such as: “You might be thinking…“; “Imagine you…
  • Tell practical examples: “A real-life example of  this is…“; “How this will work inside your business is by…”
  • Explain specific solutions: “One of the best practical solutions to this problem is…
  • Show how other people have benefited from it: Use testimonials: “This testimonial video shows exactly of people like you can benefit from XYZ…” or offer some contrasting examples: “This is before..” “This is after…” OR “Not this… but this…”

3. TIPS ON HOW TO EMPHASISE YOUR KEY PRESENTATION IDEA

Below are great ways to accentuate, highlight or spotlight your best presentation ideas:

  • Use adjectives such as groundbreaking, pioneering, radical, cutting age, game changer, staggering, insanely great, leading edge, trendsetting, amazing, stunning, astonishing and mind-blowing.
  •  Create urgency: explain what the audience will be missing out on if they do not action the idea in a specific time period.

2. WRAPPING UP YOUR PRESENTATION

  • Summarise your key presentation message into three key benefits. A great question you can ask yourself is: “What are the top three things I want my audience to remember/action once my public speaking presentation is over?
  • End with one single final transferable message. Your final message needs to be SIMPLE so your audience can remember and share it.
  • Thank your Audience. show your appreciation for their time and attention. You could say: “Before we finish I just want to make a big thank you to…”
  • Offer a brief feedback form. Brief feedback with no more than 4 questions will help you get better at your public speaking. Interesting questions the audience will be happy to answer are:
    • Did the presentation deliver what you expected?
    • Did the presenter offer the knowledge and tools to solve your current issues and challenges?
    • Would you come back to see this presenter again?
    • What’s your best suggestion to make this presentation better?

1. FINAL TIPS

  • I like to use the “B” key to blank the PowerPoint presentation when I want people to look at me and pay attention to what I want to explain. I would suggest you try this trick and see how you go.

CONCLUSION

Some of the above best public speaking skills are important in different professional, personal, social and legal contexts. Training your public speaking skills will enable you to communicate your ideas, thoughts, feelings, arguments and messages effectively. Public speaking skills will also aid the process of effectively presenting evidence and proof and showing how you have applied the critical thinking process necessary when making informed decisions.

Public speaking skills include articulating ideas, thoughts and feelings clearly, concisely, and persuasively.

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THE BEST PUBLIC SPEAKING SKILLS IN 2024

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